Designed to rival the GoPro, the Insta360, and the newly launched (and highly impressive)
Titled the Xiaomi Mi Action 360, the camera is a compact device no larger than most action cameras… although it does have a key difference – it comes with a swiveling wide-angle lens that turns regular photos into immersive 360° panoramic shots, allowing you to capture much more than you could with just a generic action cam.
While DJI’s Action Cam 2 focused on ease of use and an abundance of feature-rich modules to make capturing simpler on land and at sea, the Mi Action 360’s design brief is simple – “Capture Everything”. With what looks a lot like an eyeball that independently moves to scan the surroundings, the camera’s movable lens turns photos into panoramas, and lets you easily take panning shots while recording video. The eyeball-shaped lens sits within a rectangular camera body, which comes with a simplified interface with just two buttons, and a small display that acts as a viewfinder while also giving you details about your capturing conditions and quality. The display comes touch-enabled too, allowing you to toggle shooting modes, letting you control the rotation of the camera lens either pre-capture or during capture.
The Mi Action 360 overall champions a rather ‘less is more’ aesthetic. The two-button interface aside the camera’s body also has a battery level indicator, an in-built microphone, and two tripod mounts that let you hook your action camera onto tripods, selfie sticks, or a host of other mount-compatible accessories. It doesn’t match up to the DJI Action Cam’s magnetic mounting system, which I’ve declared my love for pretty publicly. That being said, the Mi Action 360’s core capabilities are entirely different, and judging by the size of the lens, this little bad boy should quite easily be able to capture 360° HDRI images in 4K, which would make for great immersive VR content. It’s a shame this camera’s just a concept… although here’s hoping that an exec at Xiaomi sees this design.
Designer: Michal Dufka